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Communicating well with patients and families

Research shows that the way we speak to clients and patients can have a critical impact on their health and wellbeing. Outcomes are affected by the patient/healer relationship and the effects of careless language can be costly. This workshop for clinical staff focuses on ways of developing effective communication and language skills with patients and their families. It has also been well received by therapists, social workers and other front line staff. It is supported by research and case studies collected by the presenter over the last ten years.

Content

  • How the language we use has hidden impact
  • Common and non-specific factors in healing
  • Case studies: ‘Where words have made a difference’
  • The use of rapport, time and influence
  • A structured approach to effective communication
  • Avoiding misunderstandings in clinical practice
  • Communicating with other staff
  • Techniques for managing the therapeutic relationship
  • Reading the feedback, engaging the patient
  • Sensitive questioning skills
  • Aiming for better understanding and compliance
  • How much to communicate, and when
  • Hope, expectation and realism
  • Giving bad news, fitting responses
  • Talking about loss and bereavement
  • Handling blame, reproach and recrimination
  • Follow up and ‘hand holding’.

Objectives

Understand the impact of language in the clinical setting
Be able to build rapport quickly
Improve listening and observation skills
Enhance verbal and non-verbal communication
Develop a range of enhanced verbal and non verbal skills
Structure approaches for dealing with ‘difficult’ situations
Practise specific techniques for improving communications.
Reduce the risk of litigation by angry or dissatisfied patients.

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